In 1998 our family got our first ever PC, before this the only computer we had was an Amiga 500.
Around the time we got the PC i purchased a copy of PC Zone (PC gaming magazine here in the UK) this had a demo CD which contained a demo for Age of Empires.
I was blown away by Age of Empires, i’d never played a game like it before. Myself and my brother used to spend hours playing the demo over and over again. Eventually our parents got us the full game and the rest was history.
Around a year later in 1999 we got the internet and i was able to play AOE on the MSN Gaming Zone. I remember the first person i ever played online with was called high admiral, i think he shared his MSN Gaming Zone account with his Dad.
Needless to say once we got the next phone bill myself and my brother were both banned from playing games online anymore… it wasn’t until around a year later unlimited dialup internet became a thing and we could dialup for free and simply pay a set fee for the internet each month.
Age of Empires was the first game i ever played on the internet, something we take for granted today, however in 1999 not many people I knew had the internet, let alone had played an online game.
I think I would have been around 14 back then!
Fun times all the same!
So looking forward to getting back online for this, i used to run a clan on msn zone in the old days, i was lucky to have a isdn line but did have dial up before:) great times
Quite similar to me ! Though i think i got it not so legally at first after the demo and buying it later. I played it on GoA a french website that had the same purpose of zone, first time i got on this site was a friend bringing me to play a game with him (don’t even remember the game, though it’s not important !) and after checking the game list and seeing aoe, i got pretty excited. Hah, i was so clueless at this time xD
Ahh, the memories. This was back when MS was putting out some good solid PC games. I remember looking for games that MS published because they were almost always good (Close Combat, Monster Truck Madness, etc). AOE was no exception. Spent many an hour playing AOE/AOE II as a teen in the late 90’s. It scratched an itch for sure.
Oh man I remember playing the demo for Rise of Rome … Which was included in the installation disc of Windows 98 I believe … I was non stop playing it … I was even able to only listen to the music and randomly building houses and Wonders - My friend had a purchased disk and I remember being jealous … then after few months I was able to play full version too these times were really great.
Bought my second pc which was an Emachine with Win 98 had the Microsoft demo disc with it played the demo for weeks then finally bought it…man good times.
My friend boght a compac pc and it came with encarta and aoe, i asked to borrow and never gave it back.
I got it on Christmas in 1997. It was the time, where installing a game was animated. Here is an example I found on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mVAIj0elLR8
That was really lovely and I hope, they will think on this in the setup. I was blown away with 12 years when I saw the horse animations, they where moving so smooth, idle animations wow!